Transcript of "Video Games And Violence By Bob Billingham"
What’s the real story behind
Lesson Overview <ul><li>Answers to myths about video game’s link to violence </li></ul><ul><li>Unrealistic video game violence is completely safe for adolescents and older youths. </li></ul><ul><li>Violent video games affect only a small fraction of players. </li></ul><ul><li>If violent video games cause increases in aggression, violent crime rates in the U.S. would be increasing instead of decreasing. </li></ul><ul><li>Counters to video game’s link to violence </li></ul><ul><li>Video Game Rating System </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits of violent video games </li></ul><ul><li>The evolution of thought on violent video games </li></ul><ul><li>How does the Internet play a roll in video game violence </li></ul><ul><li>What quantity of people play games online </li></ul><ul><li>What kind of moderation is there </li></ul><ul><li>How can the internet counter or encourage the use of violent video games </li></ul><ul><li>Personal reflection and conclusion </li></ul><ul><li>References </li></ul>
Myth 1: Unrealistic video game violence is completely safe for adolescents and older youths <ul><li>There is a common misconception that unrealistic video game violence is safe and has no affect on adolescents or older. It has become a common conception that if a game using the ERSB Scale ( The Entertainment Software Rating Board ), is rated (E) ,it is safe enough for children 6 and up. New studies that are in progress with college students are showing that there is an increase in aggression after exposure to such games. More research needs to be completed on finding out the duration the elevated emotional response and if there are long term affects. It should be taken into consideration by parents and prospective game players that research is not conclusive at this point. </li></ul><ul><li>There is no conclusive scientific evidence that supports that only a small fraction of violent video game players are affected by the stimulus of playing the video game. There is also no consistent evidence showing that age or gender are more or less affected. What studies are showing is that people with more aggressive tendencies are more affected than those people who would be considered nonaggressive. There is much work yet to be done, but the consensus thus far indicates that the majority of people are affected by violent video games. </li></ul>Myth 2: Violent video games affect only a small fraction of players .
Myth 3: If violent video games cause increases in aggression, violent crime rates in the U.S. would be increasing instead of decreasing. <ul><li>There are several assumptions made by this statement and upon review of the facts, there are contradictions. </li></ul><ul><li>To prove this statement three key factors must be true: that there has been an increase in the exposure to violent media (including video games), proof that violent crime rates among the target audience of the violent media (children and young adults) is actually down not up, and finally it should be assumed that violent video games are the only or main source of violence in society. </li></ul><ul><li>The first assumption is probably true, more and more violence is being shown to more people everyday. For example: violence is displayed through news media and with multimillion dollar video game successes, much like the Halo series. With the next assumption, this myth falls apart: according to a 2001 Report of the Surgeon General on Youth Violence (Figure 2-7, p. 25) there has been a steady increase in young adult violence for </li></ul><ul><li>at least 10 years. The last statement is not </li></ul><ul><li>the case. Studies indicate that media violence (including </li></ul><ul><li>videogames) is only one of many factors that contribute </li></ul><ul><li>to violence in society, and it has repeatedly been noted </li></ul><ul><li> that it is not the most important of the factors. </li></ul>
Where do we go from here? <ul><li>While it’s definitely safe to say that there is some correlation to video game violence, even in fantasy scenarios, there are many more studies to be done including possible long-term effects that might be caused by media violence. We as homosapiens learn through repetitive actions and imitation, and it can only be assumed that in some cases what happens is a result of this. While video game violence has been proven to increase aggression, it has been also been proven that media violence (including video games) is not the majority cause of social violence amongst young adults. I think there is much more research to be done on this subject. I think most scientists would agree that it’s okay to play a video game from time to time. </li></ul>
Counters to video game’s link to violence <ul><li>First we need to classify what a “violent video game” really is. The most prominent rating system out is called the ESRB ( The Entertainment Software Rating Board ). While not all games are required by law to use the ESRB rating system, most chain retail markets only sell rated games. The ESRB was established in 1994 as a non-profit, self regulating body to assign computer and video game content ratings, enforce industry-adopted advertising guidelines and helps insure online privacy for the interactive entertainment software industry. This is a system to rate the age range and maturity level of the software however the ESRB openly states that these are just guidelines and that it ultimately up to the parent to allow the child to purchase the game if it is rated above their current age category. </li></ul>
ESRB continued <ul><li>A full listing of all the terms used in the previous slide can be found here . They use a list of over 30 different content descriptors based on the rating. A game can even be give a “mild” version of those descriptors to convey that there is a very low frequency of such acts. The descriptors cover everything from violence, type of violence, sex, and drug use just to name a few. The goal is to give the adult as much detail about the type of experience their child will get while playing the game and then decide if it’s acceptable or not. </li></ul><ul><li>The good news is it’s not all bad news. One major area benefited by players of violent and most video games is an improved Eye-Hand coordination. Studies have even found that not only Eye-Hand coordination but reaction time with the hands and fingers. Simulations are another way that video games are helpful. The military has already tapped into this technology releasing a game called America’s Army . The goal being to interest potential recruits as well as test out battle scenarios. </li></ul>Benefits of violent video games
The evolution of thought on violent video games <ul><li>We’ve seen that using violent video games stimulates aggression. We have also see that video games can help improve reflexes as well as save lives by trying out military missions though a video game before real life. Gamers today crave more and more violent video games, but it is not likely to make them more aggressive as individuals. What is really helping the gaming industry now is the ESRB. Allowing more accurate information about the games content that what the box advertises. This in turn helps parents and gamers make more informed purchases and I believe this will cause decline of the stereotype that “Violent Video Games are bad.” </li></ul>
How does the Internet play a roll in video game violence <ul><li>What quantity of people play games online </li></ul><ul><li>While it’s hard to get concrete numbers on how many people play online, games like World of Warcraft ® boost 11 million plus players. With numbers being reported like that it can be assumed that the majority of people have tried or currently play online video games. Recent studies revel that 97% of all teens play video games regularly, while not all may be online, the use of the internet has allowed for people who live great distances to play a game with or against the other person. There is much research to be done on the affects of completive online violent video game players and aggression level increases. The main difference being that typical video games it is you playing against a computer, now when you add the human element, you must question the effects does knowing you’ve just killed another persons character. </li></ul>
<ul><li>What kind of moderation is there </li></ul><ul><li>At present time there are no set standards, as it is the internet and few rules are enforced as we’ve seen with the music and movie industry. Control over content is largely considered to be the responsibility of the Adult or Parent. Past that the games themselves also have a disclosure policy you must agree to which typically tries to minimize the use of inappropriate language, pornography, and other things the company or server that runs the come dictates. Popular games where there is always player with player interaction will often employ moderators, or people who’s soul purpose in the game is to help players with problems, and warn or punish users who are not in compliance with their policies. </li></ul>
How can the internet counter or encourage the use of violent video games <ul><li>The internet is going to be a powerful tool for shaping delving violent media in mass. It has already proven to have captured millions of people. The real factor is going to be the human factor. Violent video games played with other players can server as training and can save lives in the battle field. Just the violent videogames can build internal aggression, if there proves to be a build up, spending hours online playing a video game would certainly not help you be a calm individual. </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions and final thoughts </li></ul><ul><li>There are many unanswered questions left to us to figure out. As a personal gamer reflecting on my past I can see times where something upsetting in a game has caused swearing and sometimes physical reaction, slamming my hand on table. However having spent 10+ years as a gamer I cannot say there are permanent effects, or at least none that have been pointed out to me. I would also have to say it helped me when I was in the armed service, I excelled at the eye-hand coordination exercises and as a result was much better shooting a rifle. I think society is on the correct action towards violent video games, giving the control not to some masked censor, but to the purchasers' of the games. </li></ul>